2. Important Announcements


Dear Readers,

We would like to welcome you to our new home here at http://esotericbookreview.wordpress.com – you may have found us by following a link to our old website, or maybe your browser redirected you here.

The Esoteric Book Review was created by the occult author Sorita d’Este as part of her Avalonia website which was founded in 1997.  It moved to its own seperate website about two years ago during some reorganisations of Avalonia by Sorita.  At that time she appointed me as the Reviews Editor and with her help I have been able to learn more about internet technology and gain the confidence to be able to now take on the massive task of administering this website by myself.

The Esoteric Book Review is a peer review.  The reviews you will find here have been written by people who have many years worth of experience as practitioners of magick, devotees of the old gods, readers of tarot and weavers of the webs of sorcery.   They include amongst them esoteric scholars and academics, authors, writers, teachers of wicca and members of large and prestigious magical organisations and traditions.   They share their genuine opinion on the books they review, good or bad.  They are volunteers who share a passion for the occult, for magick, paganism and spirituality, for witchcraft, voodoo, root magic and the old gods.

So if you are with us now, in the words of Aleister Crowley:

“Beauty and strength, leaping laughter and delicious languor, force and fire, are of us.”

156, 93, BB, LVX and all the fraternal and sororal blessings

Nina Lazarus

 

PS. Please note, the reviews previous to the this message have all been imported from the original reviews website.  They are all posted as “Avalonia LuxNox” though they were written by a variety of authors over the last few years.  In most instances the name of the author is contained within the message body itself.

Avalonia is proud to announce the The Book of Treasure Spirits, edited by David Rankine, will soon be joining the other excellent books by this author in our catalogue.  It will be available for pre-order from later this month from Avalonia, you can also ask your local occult shop to order a copy for you, or order from Amazon and other such online retailers.

treasurespirites

THE BOOK OF TREASURE SPIRITS
With Introduction & Commentary by David Rankine

Conjurations of Goetic spirits, old gods, demons and fairies are all part of a rich heritage of the magical search for treasure trove.  During the Middle Ages and Renaissance the British Monarchy gave out licenses to people seeking treasure in an effort to control such practices, and this is one reason why so many grimoires are full of conjurations and charms to help the magician find treasure. 

Published here for the first time, from a long-ignored mid-seventeenth century manuscript in the British Library (Sloane MS 3824), is the conjuration said to have been performed at the request of King Edward IV, with other rites to reveal treasure, to have treasure brought from the sea, and to cause thieves to bring back stolen goods.  Conjurations to call any type of spirit are also included, recorded by the noted alchemist and collector Elias Ashmole, as is an extract on conjuration practices from the Heptameron, transcribed into English for practical use by a working group of magicians, before its first English publication by Robert Turner in 1655.

These conjurations demonstrate the influence of earlier classic grimoires and sources, with components drawn from the Goetia, the Heptameron, and Reginald Scot’s Discoverie of Witchcraft. The material includes spirit contracts for the fallen angels Agares and Vassago, and the demon Padiel, as well as techniques like lead plates for binding, and summoning into a glass of water, which hark back to the defixiones of Hellenistic Greece and the demonic magic of the Biblical world.

This material forms part of a corpus of conjurations all written in the same hand and style of evocation, linking Goetic spirits and treasure spirits with the archangels and planetary intelligences (Sloane MS 3825), and demon kings and Enochian hierarchies (Sloane MS 3821), making it a unique bridge of style and content between what are often falsely seen as diverse threads of Renaissance magic. 
 

 Soon available from www.avaloniabooks.com

stellarmagicsm

Avalonia is proud to announce that STELLAR MAGIC by Payam Nabarz is now
available for pre-order from www.avaloniabooks.co.uk. This long-waited and very
practical Liber Astrum is being released on the Full Moon – 7 / 7 /2009.

More info & Order Information

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STELLAR MAGIC

By Payam Nabarz

Avalonia 2009, RRP £12.99

PB, 208 pages, ISBN 978-1905297252

The stars have influenced mankind with their magic from time
immemorial, as evidenced by Archeoastronomy; instructing astrologers
and priests, guiding sailors and inspiring poets. For millennia,
cultures all around the world have told their myths and legends
through the canvas of the night sky. Yet despite the immense
significance of the constellations and stars in the ancient world,
stellar magic has been largely ignored in recent centuries.

In this inspirational and practical Liber Astrum, the author draws
together material from ancient, classical and medieval sources;
spanning East and West, fusing modern poetry with ancient magic,
mysticism with myth and ritual with recital to lift our gazes back to
the heavens.

The author’s breadth of scholarship is seen in the spectrum of
material he weaves together, from sources as diverse as the Hymns of
Orpheus and Plato’s Timaeus to the Zoroastrian Yasht hymns and Persian
Pahlavi Texts, the Sufi works of the Ibn Arabi and Rumi; from the
Chaldean Oracles and the Greek Magical Papyri to the Books of Ezekiel
and Enoch, from the Picatrix and the Sefer Yetzirah to the works of
John Dee, Rudolf Steiner, Gerald Gardner and Aleister Crowley. The
poetic inspiration of the stars is also expressed through material and
ideas by such luminaries as John Milton, Gerald Manly Hopkins, Sylvia
Plath, Robert Graves and W.B. Yeats.

Through the enchanting words and ceremonies provided to lead the way,
timeless journeys to the stars are woven around the participants.
Included amongst the rites are ceremonies with the constellations of
Perseus & Andromeda, Cygnus, Orion, the Pleiades, the Great Bear,
Draco, the twelve signs of the Zodiac, the star Sirius, the Moon, the
seven classical Planets, and the Stellar World Cave: the Mithraeum.

This is a highly accessible, succinct and practical book on a complex
subject, which will benefit anyone interested in the magic of the
stars, from the casual observer of the night skies to the dedicated
magician or mystic.

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http://www.avaloniabooks.co.uk/catalogue/titles/stellar_magic2.htm

Avalonia Books is proud to announce that BOTH SIDES OF HEAVEN will be released as our “coming of age” title on the 25th of June.   This book is the 21st title to join our growing catalogue.bothsidesofheaven


BOTH SIDES OF HEAVEN
Edited by Sorita d’Este

Look up towards the heavens and open your mind to the infinite, for it is there that you will see the colourful multifaceted world of winged messengers – Gods, Angels, Fallen Angels and Demons.

BOTH SIDES OF HEAVEN is a collection of 18 essays by some of the foremost modern esoteric writers, occult scholars and magicians. In their personal contributions they share their experiences, research and unique insights into the spiritual realms of the mysterious beings who have played such an important and inspirational role in human spiritual history.

From the nature of the daimons of the Graeco-Roman world, the Zoroastrian Ahuras and Daevas, the seductive Lilith and mighty Lucifer, through to the Fallen Angels of the Bible and the Book of Enoch, and their children the Nephilim, we find that these powerful beings are harbingers of change.

In this anthology their magical natures are explored through the works of Renaissance magicians such as Dr John Dee and Edward Kelley, Dr Thomas Rudd and more recently Madeline Montalban, as well as in that of the experiences of the contributors themselves. The ceremonies and conjurations of grimoires such as the Key of Solomon, Goetia and Grimorium Verum are considered, as well as adaptations thereof and simpler, personal encounters.

When you look at Both Sides of Heaven seeking wisdom and knowledge from the wings of ethereal messengers, you will see legions of angels and demons, archangels, fallen angels, old gods and even a few faeries and green butterflies. And maybe, they will be looking back at you too.

Contents:
A Host of Winged Messengers – Sorita d’Este
Fallen Angels and Legends of the Fall – Rufus Harrington
On the Wings of Rebirth – Katherine Sutherland
The Myth of the Fallen Ones – Michael Howard
The Enochians – Aaron Leitch
Madeline Montalban, Elemental and Fallen Angels – Julia Phillips
Azazel & Shemyaza – Diana Allam
Thirteen Unicycles in the Woods – Adele Nozedar
The Salvation of the Sidhe – Emily Carding
The Green Butterfly – Dan Harms
The Fallen Angels and the Goetia – David Rankine
Demons & Devils – Maestro Nestor
Grimoires for Pagans – Jake Stratton-Kent
The Thwarting Angels – Stephen Skinner
Loving Lilith – Melissa Harrington
The Face in the Mirror – Charlotte Rodgers
Between Gods and Men – Kim Huggens
Zoroastrian Angels and Demons – Payam Nabarz

BOTH SIDES OF HEAVEN is available for order from Avalonia, as well as from Amazon another good bookstores.

The Esoteric author and folklorist David Rankine will be giving a free talk on Friday, 29th May at the “HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN” philosophy and music festival in Hay on Wye.  This is the first festival of its kind in the UK and coincides with the week of the Hay on Wye Guardian Book Festival.

David will be speaking about the research he did with Sorita d’Este for their book “Visions of the Cailleach” (this is billed incorrectly on the festival program!)

The Cailleach is one of the most intriguing and significant figures in British folklore. Some tales portray her as a benevolent and primal giantess from the dawn of time who shaped the land and controlled the forces of nature, others as the harsh spirit of winter. Occasionally there are hints that she may represent the survival of an early sovereignty bestowing earth goddess, or her ancient nature-based priestess cult. In the last twelve hundred years the Christian overlay has both demonised and canonised her.

Tickets are FREE (though you have to book online to reserve a place to ensure that you have a place).  Go to  —— http://www.howthelightgetsin.org/ticket-sales/ and scroll down to 29th May, where you will find David’s talk on the Cailleach listed under “Myth and Magic”.

You will learn about about this unique figure of British mythology from one of the foremost modern esoteric researchers who is well known for his work in this field. For more information on the Cailleach and the book by Sorita d’Este and David Rankine see http://cailleach.avalonia.co.uk/

We hope to see you there!

We are proud to announce …

hekate_liminalrites

HEKATE LIMINAL RITES
A Study of the rituals, magic and symbols of the torch-bearing Triple Goddess of the Crossroads

By Sorita d’Este and David Rankine

PB, RRP £12.99, 196 pages, ISBN 978-1905297238


Available for pre-order from http://www.avaloniabooks.co.uk/catalogue/titles/hekate_liminalrites.htm

First published by Avalonia, May 2009At the crossroads of life, death and rebirth stands the Goddess Hekate. Honoured by men, women and gods alike, traces of her ancient provenance reach back through the millennia providing clues about her nature and origins along the way. Depictions of her as three formed facing in three ways, sometimes with the heads of animals such as the horse, dog and snake hint at her liminal nature, as well as the powers she holds over the triple realms of earth, sea and sky.

The sorcery of Medea and Circe, the witchcraft of the women of Thessaly, the writings of philosophers such as Hesiod and Porphyry all provide glimpses into the world of those who honoured her. Her magical powers were considered so great that even King Solomon became associated with her, she was incorporated into Jewish magic, and merged with other goddesses including Artemis, Selene, Bendis and the Egyptian Isis. Whilst for some she was the Witch Goddess, for others she was the ruler of angels and daimons, who made predictions about Jesus and Christianity.

Wherever you look, be it in the texts of Ancient Greece and Rome, Byzantium or the Renaissance, the Greek Magical Papyri or the Chaldean Oracles, you will find Hekate. The magical whir of the strophalos and the barbarous words of the voces magicae carry her message; the defixiones, love spells and charms all provides us with examples of the magic done in her name. She was also associated with the magic of death, including necromancy and reanimation; as well as prophetic dreams, nightmares, healing herbs and poisons. The temples dedicated to her and the important role she played in the mysteries of Eleusis, Samothrace and Aigina all provide us with clues to her majesty. The popular shrines at the doorways of ordinary people, offerings left at the crossroads and guardian statues of her at the entrance ways to cities and temples all attest to her status in the hearts and minds of those who knew her mysteries.

In this book the authors draw from a wide range of sources, bringing together historical research which provides insights into the magical and religious practices associated with this remarkable Goddess. In doing so they provide an indispensable guide for those wishing to explore the mysteries of Hekate today.

See http://www.avaloniabooks.co.uk/catalogue/titles/hekate_liminalrites.htm for further information, including a Table of contents.


Priestesses, Pythonesses & Sibyls is the latest anthology to be released by Avalonia Books.  It is already causing a lot of excitement, so we are pleased to be able to include this announcement here on the Esoteric Book Review.

Priestesses, Pythonesses & Sibyls
Edited by Sorita d’Este, with 20 Phenomenal Women and modern day Priestesses

Available for order now at Avalonia Books (free P&P worldwide)

Priestesses Pythonesses Sibyls lifts a veil to reveal the mystery of trance as experienced by female magickal practitioners today. Through happiness and sorrow, myth and legend, art and poetry, through ritual and dance each woman expresses her own unique and personal transformative experiences of trance. Whether through trance possession, mediumship, Drawing Down the Moon, oracular or mantic states, dance, dreams or formal ceremony the experiences and knowledge gained during trance states can bring dramatic changes to one’s life. The practices represented in this volume are drawn from the experiences and research of more than twenty women from around the world, each providing a unique vision of their own experiences of the Divine.

The book begins with “Ecstatic Histories” a section of three scholarly essays. The first, Mantic Voices by Sorita d’Este provides an overview of the role of mantic priestesses in the major oracles of the ancient world, with a consideration of the resurgence of the role of the priestess in the modern Western magickal traditions. This is followed by Caroline Tully’s The Pythia exploring the history and role of the Oracle at Delphi and Kim Huggens’ Silent Priestesses which looks at female priests and prophetesses in early Christianity.

Then in “Sacred Utterances”, the second part of this anthology, eighteen modern day Priestesses, Pythonesses and Sibyls share their own personal experiences, wisdom and research on the practice of trance. These women come from a wide spectrum of magickal and pagan traditions, including Goddess Spirituality, the Western Mystery Tradition, Thelema, Wicca, Candomble, Voudou and Seidr. Sharing, sometimes for the first time, deep spiritual experiences and insights gained through the work they have performed as Priestesses serving in their own unique way, they provide the reader with insights into their practices which could not be found anywhere else.

This section includes essays by authors such as Janet Farrar, Naomi Ozaniec and Vivienne O’Regan, Wiccan Priestesses Galatea, Diane Champigny, Yvonne Aburrow, Emily Ounsted and Sorrell Cochrane, and Priestess of Avalon Jacqui Woodward-Smith. It also includes Seidr practitioner Katie Gerrard, Priestess of Apollo Bolina Oceanus, Cathryn Orchard a Priestess of the Gnostic Catholic Church, Voudou hounsi bossal Sophia Fisher, Healer and Psychic Medium Kay Gillard, Orixa devotee Andrea Salgado-Reyes, Teacher and Priestess Connia Silver, and dancers Mariëlle Holman and Nina Falaise.

Unique, powerful and insightful, this book expresses the liminal world of trance in an accessible way for the first time.

Available now from Avalonia Books

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